Reality of wind folly dawns on the National Trust

According to the Chairman of the National Trust, Sir Simon Jenkins, ‘not a week goes by’ without the charity having to fight plans for wind farms that threaten the more than 700 miles of coastline, 28,500 acres of countryside and more than 500 properties owned by the Trust. He is quoted in the Barclay Brother Beano, saying:

Broadly speaking the National Trust is deeply sceptical of this form of renewable energy.

Jenkins has correctly identified wind power as the least efficient form of power generation.  Despite having previously supported all forms of renewables, the National Trust’s official position now caveats this heavily. The official position now is to support renewable energy, including wind, although only in places where the turbine will produce the maximum amount of energy and ‘with regard to the full range of environmental considerations’. Jenkins said:

We are doing masses of renewables but wind is probably the least efficient and wrecks the countryside and the National Trust is about preserving the countryside.

Only the stuffed suits inside the Westminster bubble and those in the wind industry who stand to make a fortune from installing turbines, whether the wind blows or not and whether the energy contribution to the grid is negligible or not, remain doggedly in favour of this unreliable form of renewable power.  But that is all that’s required to push ahead with spending many more billions of pounds of our money on this folly.

As if to underline the level of reality disconnect among the political class, the new Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey, has already stated his position when he claimed wind power will ensure energy security as fossil fuels run out, cut carbon emissions and provide jobs.  Very much a case of meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

Wind power cannot provide energy security. Wind fluctuates, therefore the power generated from it fluctuates. That is not reliable and therefore it cannot help us secure our energy needs. Until the dogmatic lunatics in orbit around the Cameron Presidency base policy on fact instead of the spin emanating from the rent seeking wind power companies, this subversion of common sense will continue.

11 Responses to “Reality of wind folly dawns on the National Trust”


  1. 1 David Ramsbotham 13/02/2012 at 9:12 am

    I have been a member of the NT for many years and my reaction is better late than never.

    Are you disillusioned by rising electricity prices, over dependence on the “green” dream [especially uneconomical and inefficient wind farms] and the destruction of our countryside then please register your objection to the Government by GOOGLING “E-PETITION 22958” and following the link.

    Plese get your friends to sign up too.

  2. 2 Junkk Male 13/02/2012 at 9:51 am

    What continually amazes me in all this is the near miraculous degree of faith and spinning over numbers (or lack of) being continually shown by most ‘establishment’ bodies, from Government to an often selectively curious media estate.

    There are often imponderables, and that is what contingencies are for, but across civil, mechanical and electrical engineering disciplines, for the life of me I can’t see what the problem in doing a proper ROI and/or enviROI assessment between what has been or is and/or can be.

    Enough historical data (especially recent) exists to know what wind blows, for how long, when, and where. We know what the demands are, and will be. We should know what conversion rates will be at the moment and amortised over life. Also maintenance schedules and costs between going up and coming down, cradle to grave.

    So why do I still get BS from Ministers, faithfully spun by too many media, telling me what ‘could’ be happening when based on figures that are patently insane, namely ideal continual delivery 24/7, down mythical distribution systems that cannot store or cope with what isn’t being produced anyway.

    Any who issue such data, or spin it out, are frankly complicit in massive public fraud.

    It would not be allowed in most other areas of public service or consumer advertising… why here?

    Fossils will run out. Renewables are ‘an’ alternative energy source, but within massive limitations. The claims being made are however denial at an astounding level that can surely be levelled at many who see that word as their province and theirs alone to use.

  3. 3 Adam West 13/02/2012 at 10:02 am

    “The official position now is to support renewable energy, including wind, although only in places where the turbine will produce the maximum amount of energy and ‘with regard to the full range of environmental considerations’. Jenkins said:

    We are doing masses of renewables but wind is probably the least efficient and wrecks the countryside and the National Trust is about preserving the countryside.”

    The countryside is a workplace not a museum. Their idea of ‘environmental considerations’ includes whether a whacking great turbine offends the view of any particular patch of countryside. They do, but the NT shouldn’t kid themselves that it is an environmental issue. It is simply an opinion.

    If they meant what they say they would campaign for the subsidies to be cut or removed to ensure only the areas that are cost effective are developed. Are they?

    The NT “fully supports UK renewable energy initiatives” (pdf) except where it might impact them. If they fought turbines on the grounds of them being a crap source of energy, creating a low frequency noise disturbance and killing bats and birds I would have more time for their position, but they aren’t.

  4. 4 Barry Sheridan 13/02/2012 at 11:54 am

    I find this bewildering. How can someone promoted to Ministerial level in what is a key industry be so stupid. We have just seen one complete idiot resign only to get another with no more sense. And to think, these people are referred to as elites.

  5. 5 Beware of Geeks Bearing GIFs 13/02/2012 at 5:28 pm

    This could all have been stopped right at the first sign of someone mentioning windmills by calling in a handful of UK National Grid operators:

    [Scene: meeting room, Energy Minister, 6 National Grid operators]

    Minister: “Right chaps, thinking of plugging in thousands of windmills around the countryside and offshore with a National Grid penetration rate of 20% to conquer Global Warming, what do you reckon?”

    Operators: “And have us running around the place trying to stabilise the Grid spikes and watching baseload CCGTs and Coal Fired power stations vary their turndown rates causing more fossil fuel consumption, more CO2 produced and more stress on shaft and bearings as these things are designed to run at a constant load? How can I ask a windfarm to legally guarantee me a defined power output to plug into the grid to cater for the spike load when the X-Factor adverts start in the evening?

    Definitely not, it’s the madness of kings”

    Minister: “Well, this could be awkward…”

  6. 6 Dave H 13/02/2012 at 8:47 pm

    Must be a bit more wind this evening, it’s managing almost 2GW. As the Geek mentioned though, it must play hell with the rest, given how low it was a few days ago. The nuclear side must have brought a reactor back on-line in the last week, because that was running constant at just under 8GW and is now about 8.6GW.

    I was at Great Yarmouth on Friday, ugly blot on the seascape to the NE, loads of wind turbines streaked with rust.

  7. 7 Woodsy42 14/02/2012 at 1:23 am

    @Adam West
    “If they meant what they say they would campaign for the subsidies to be cut or removed to ensure only the areas that are cost effective are developed”

    No Adam, if they meant what they say they would keep out of the politics of energy supply and stop trying to be a political organisation. Their mission and task is to preserve our heritage. Unless that is threatened they have no mandate from anyone and no moral right to campaign for or against other political issues.

  8. 8 Brian H 14/02/2012 at 6:15 am

    “fluctuating” doesn’t quite catch it. “Wildly swinging” is closer. And note that the existence of even brief, let alone weeks-extended, still cold conditions in winter are mass killers. Any sane country would have to have fail-safe 100% backup for those periods. Which instantly renders wind turbines grossly over-priced.

    As for the “workplace not a museum” crack, consider that windfarms are potent tourist un-attractions. Many areas are now suffering the financial consequences of that. They also zero-out the property values of nearby towns and villages, btw. No one deliberately moves closer to a windfarm!

  9. 9 dave ward 14/02/2012 at 12:13 pm

    @ Dave H – I pass Great Yarmouth fairly regularly, and only ONCE, since the windfarm was completed, have I seen them all turning together. IIRC there were some major electrical or mechanical problems even before it was all finished…

  10. 10 jameshigham 15/02/2012 at 10:58 am

    Interesting how the government always seems to back the wrong horse.

  11. 11 Brian H 16/02/2012 at 11:05 am

    james h;
    3 factors, I think.
    1) Being chosen as needful of its help by gov’t is a bad sign to begin with.
    2) Gov’t “help” is stringy and klutzy.
    3) Gov’t backing saps responsibility and urgency, with the usual results.


Comments are currently closed.



Enter your email address below

The Harrogate Agenda Explained

Email AM

Bloggers for an Independent UK

AM on Twitter

Error: Please make sure the Twitter account is public.

STOR Scandal

Autonomous Mind Archive